I put together a quick survey about 10 days ago for folks that listen to the podcast, get my newsletter, read the blog, or whatever to get a feel for what folks were thinking about the pandemic, the return of events, and what is needed to get folks back to work in the entertainment, sports, and ticket world.
I’m going to keep collecting data, but a few things stuck out to me about the future of live entertainment and tickets that I thought I’d put together this morning.
Getting events back up and running is the primary concern for folks, but people have moved past the idea of folks just rushing back to events because they are on:
I always felt that there was a psychological challenge going on at the same time we were dealing with a health crisis and a financial crisis. This is born out by the data because folks are realizing they will have to have safe spaces, sure, but also that there will be a need to repair some relationships, put an extra emphasis on the customer, and be innovative coming back.
The customer may actually end up being king or queen now:
One of the great BS moves of most organizations is to say something of the effect of “Your call is very important to us” while they leave you on the phone for 45 minutes only to cycle you back to the automated menu. Over the past few days, a few shows have gone on sale for relatively big acts in relatively big places with pricing that mimics what came before and no messaging about concern for fans, welcoming them back, or any of the standard operating procedures of successfully doing customer service.
These shows aren’t selling well. And, to be honest, many of the folks I’ve been talking with have been surprised by how soft the demand or the willingness of their customers and fans to rush back has been.
I’m not. We have entered a period where 30+ million Americans are out of work, reported. So we know the number is much higher.
The Australians are dealing with their first recession in almost 30 years and the borders to the state of Victoria are closed.
The UK is struggling with the coronavirus.
And, a lot of countries are still just starting to get back to life.
People are worried about large scale disruption on the ticketing side and/or whether or not there will be businesses when things come back:
This was weird because a lot of folks have wed the ticketing systems and the way tickets are sold with whether or not their businesses will survive.
I’ve always thought that you have to be conscious of how your customer experiences you and your sales processes at all steps of the process.
But most of the time, people felt like they had no control over the ticketing process because they were working with a partner.
I think this question and point likely needs me to follow up with folks and get clarification for what folks really mean in every case, but I’ll make 3 quick points here from my analysis of the situation:
- You and your ticket platform are partners but if you create the content you are the one in control and you need to make sure you are both taking actions that will put you in the best position to be successful.
- If you are worried about your technology partners not meeting the needs of you and your customers and this causing a problem, it pays to ask what you need from the technology and investigate whether or not you are using the right system or maximizing the use of the platform you are partnering with.
- To ensure that your business makes it through to the other side, you probably need to go back through your strategic thought process, the simple one of what’s the value we want to offer, who is our customer, and how do we reach them. Because if you have not thought through the process of what your place is in the market, your marketing, your technology, and everything you do will be less effective than it could be.